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Born in London in 1813, Abraham Hulk, Sr. was the most important member of the Hulk family of painters, which included his brother John Frederick Hulk (1829-1911), who painted landscapes and town scenes and his son Abraham Hulk, Jr., who lived most of his life in England and painted landscapes predominantly in Surrey.
Hulk studied at the Amsterdam Academy under the portrait painter Jean-Augustin Daiwaille (1786-1856). Between 1833-1834 he visited North America before returning to Holland, living in Amsterdam, Nijkerk, Enkhuizen, Haarlem and Oosterbeek. During this period, he became an established painter of marine subjects and regularly exhibited his work. In 1870 Hulk returned to London, where he lived for the rest of his life.
Hulk`s skill at depicting atmosphere at sea mirrored that of the many artists of the Dutch Romantic School. Influenced by the Dutch artists of the 17th century, the Romantic painters excelled at scenes of everyday life which combined technical skill and attention to detail with a strong sensitivity to nature. These paintings were avidly sought after by the new middle class collectors of the 19th century, as they still are today. Hulk was equally skilful in painting a choppy sea with looming storm clouds as he was with this fine work of a calm estuary at sunset.
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